Dear Tam Tam,
It has been 7 months since you left us for a better place, which some say is called the Rainbow Bridge. And then I realized, it has also taken me this long to write this to you. But trust me, it will take longer for me to recover from losing you.
I still remember how you came into our lives. Forcefully, very feisty and definitely fiercely loyal. You have always been very vocal; meowing and purring at us even when the situation never called for it. Turns out you just would like us to know "Hey, I'm here for you. Even if you don't want me to".
Truth is, never had there been any occasion when I never wanted you to be my side; all those late nights listening to me whining away about my life (fine, maybe you didn't listen but you understood all the same) and you just looked at me all the same and purred gently. Oh how I miss those moments. My head aches just from supressing these thoughts. So much sentimental value these are to me.
You gave a good 12 years of your life to us, filling our time and memories with so much joy and laughter. I particularly was fond of jolting you awake from your deep sleep – mean of me, I know – but it was hilarious to see you getting startled from your slumber. Towards your twilight years however, I did tone down on such acts, more so upon discovering the tumour in your chest.
That was horrible. It must have been horrible on you. I never understood, neither were you able to comprehend, how painful it was. From having a mound grow on your chest to licking the wound when it burst open, you had never faltered in loving me. Despite having to breathe heavily when the cancer cells spread across your lungs, you still purred every time I stroked your chin, patted your head or boop-ed your nose. Gosh I could never imagine the pain you endured just to make me smile, or to cheer our family up.
You did not take too kindly for those times we went to the vet and had to undergo surgery. I know; you absolutely hated it. It was hard to hear you crying loudly as we went to and fro the clinic and hospital, but it had to be done. But it is worse for me to see you in such a sedated state after fetching you from the surgery. You lost your vigour, your energy, your sense of balance. And again, you could not understand why. Yet you still leaned on my hand when I reached out to you.
Your last day was hard on me. Very hard. I never saw it coming. We were supposed to return home. So we could place you in an oxygen chamber. So you could breathe easy. And rest easy. But you panicked and struggled when I fetched you at the hospital. You absolutely detested getting into the transport. I tried to calm you down. Put my finger into the cage to stroke your head. But you bit me. Hard, but not hard enough for me to bleed. Never had you harmed me, yet this is the first time you bit me. Was that you letting me know to let you go?
I got the sign. Rushing in to the emergency room, the vet told me I have to brave myself and anticipate the worst for you. Your gums were turning blue, and you were convulsing. We had to place you inside the oxygen chamber to "lessen your suffering", as the vet had informed me.
I had to look through the glass door to see you writhing in agony. No. This couldn’t be it. I need to hug you before you go. I want to hug you, and comfort me, like how you have done throughout your lifetime for me.
And you gasped. Gasping, till the very last moment your eyes turned cloudy. Your body stiffened and became colder by the minute. That was it. I knew you have crossed over to the Rainbow Bridge. I was not ready for that, and till this day, I am never over your last moment with me, or any of your moments in fact. But you were gone.
Our family is now carrying on with our lives. There is a certain gloominess from your absence, but I try my best to hold your memory in high regard dear Tam Tam. You would be glad to know we are doing better. Not entirely fine, but better. And yes, Lat Lat too is coping well. She meows louder than ever, perhaps in tribute to you. But we are all better.
People around me may not understand or appreciate the bliss in having a cat for companionship, and I don't fault them. It is just not the environment they grew up in. For me, I pray and hope that they will be blessed to have even crossed paths with a naughty feline or two. Because that was how we came to be dear Tam Tam.
I now pray and seek for the kind souls out there to make a donation, big or small, for your hospital bills. May God Bless one and all.
P.S: I love you and miss you Tam Tam. Be noisy wherever you are.